Our research can be broken down into two broad areas. These relate to the basic understanding of developmental processes and how stem cells can be used for therapeutic purposes. Understanding fundamental processes of development will give insight into how cells are specified and assembled into different organs. Understanding this process is crucial if we are to find cures for disease states. We are applying our understanding of developmental biology to the differentiation of human ESCs into pancreatic cells that can be used for transplantation into diabetic patients. Our work is directed towards defining early developmental processes so that a more thorough understanding of human disease states can be obtained. Through a detailed understanding of early development, we hope to apply this information to develop approaches for the differentiation of embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells into therapeutically useful cell types that can be used to cure degenerative diseases and treat acute injury.